Shooting Sports USA - July 2017 - 30
FEATURE | NCAA
The WVU rifle team
set a championship
record en route to a fifth
straight NCAA title.
She kept at it, first learning sporter, than
moving on to precision air rifle by age 13. "I
learned 3-Position with BB gun. When I got a
bit older and bigger I began sporter air rifle.
I did that for a few years and then started
traveling an hour and a half from my home
once a week to a 4-H Club in Centreville, MD,
to learn precision air rifle."
One of 25 students in her class at the
Salisbury School, Phillips says her junior
year is when she started to take competition
seriously. "The summer of my junior year,
I committed myself to the sport because I
knew colleges were doing a lot of recruiting.
I needed to step up my game, so I increased
my training junior year. I won my age
group at the National Junior Olympic
JULY 2017 | SSUSA.ORG
She chose WVU for college after visiting
her last year of high school. "The first time
I stepped on campus, I told my dad on the
ride back-'I think this is where I want to go.'
I knew this is where I wanted to be."
Coach Hammond is one of the most cited
reasons for the team's immense success.
Phillips said, "He is really great about fixing
technical problems with a position-he is really
great about fixing that. I chat with him before
matches. If I am struggling in the middle when
I come off, I'll chat with him. And he just kind of
gets me back in that right mindset. He knows
the right thing to say to me for sure."
At NCAA, Phillips shot career best scores
for both air rifle and smallbore. She wasn't
rattled during the NCAA finals, for her it was
all about her team. "I wasn't nervous in the